Leaders of HCM City on Dec. 12 signed a deal with their counterparts in six southeastern and 13 southwestern provinces for deeper co-operation in the trade and service sectors.

Under the agreement, the provinces will create the most favourable conditions for enterprises from other localities, exchanging experience in administration reform.

The co-operation, planned between 2011 and 2015, is expected to further boost socio-ecoconomic development in the southern region by fully exploiting the advantages and potential of each province and major cities.

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh, as well as the chairman of the Southwestern Steering Committee, who attended the signing ceremony, praised HCM City for its co-operative programmes which had helped economic development in other localities.

“Regional co-operation is important for socio-economic development. Each locality has strengths and weaknesses. Mutual support will help the region develop well, and producers will get more benefits from the co-operation,” Ninh said.

urging them to complete policies for the localities to fully exploit their potential and strength.

Deputy Prime Minister Ninh promised on Dec. 12 to mobilise all resources to develop social security in the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta Region at a press briefing held to introduce next April’s trade fair, which would exhibit the achievements of the region over the past 10 years.

Ninh stressed the significance of the exhibition. He said it would create social security, economic opportunity and tourism potential for local people, particularly those in ethnic minority-inhabited areas.

He suggested that both domestic and foreign investors should prepare for and attend the event, in order to become familiar with progress and potential in the fields of agriculture, commerce and tourism, among others.

He urged businesses to continue working with local authorities to implement social security goals, poverty reduction and environmental protection.

The Steering Committee on the Southwestern Region announced that the event has generated 720 billion VND (34.5 million USD) to carry out these goals.

Deputy Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam Tran Minh Tuan said commercial banks would actively join the implementation of social programmes in the region.

Attending this trade fair, commercial banks would focus on developing credit market and bank services as well as actively support businesses and local citizens to promote the distribution of their products, Tuan said.

It will run from April 27 to May 1. /.